The Tanque Verde Valley Fire District has been operating since January 1, 2008 using the Rural/Metro Fire Department to provide fire protection and emergency medical services. The District signed a five year contract with Rural/Metro on December 19, 2007 at the Governing Board’s regular business meeting. This contract replaces individual residents paying for annual subscription service. The Tanque Verde Valley Fire District pays Rural/Metro for the services, in quarterly installments, using funds from Pima County secondary property taxes.
The Tanque Verde Valley Fire District is operated by an elected, three person, nonpartisan, Governing Board according to Arizona Revised Statutes. The Board regularly meets on the third week of every second month in the meeting room at the Kirk-Bear Canyon Library, 8959 East Tanque Verde Road. The meetings are open to the public and everyone is encouraged to attend and participate in these meetings.
The current Tanque Verde Valley Fire District services 536 residences in an area covering more than two square miles bounded by Tanque Verde Road on the South, Windridge Lane on the North, Soldier Trail on the East, and Lynford Place on the West. It is possible to annex additional adjacent areas if the residents make a request and they perform the petition processing tasks required by Arizona Revised Statute.
The Rural/Metro contract specifies certain performance criteria such as response times shall be no greater than eight minutes, 80% of the time, to a fire, medical emergency or accident within the district boundaries. Rural/Metro provides to the Fire District’s Governing Board a bi-monthly call activity report and written explanations of response times. The Fire District’s contract also specifies minimum staffing levels and equipment at the existing Fire Station 72 on Houghton Road. Rural/Metro continues to provide snake removal service at no cost to residents of the fire district.
Station 72, located at 2741 N. Houghton Road, is staffed with one Class A Pumper/Paramedic Engine Company with a minimum of 3 firefighters 24 hours per day and one Paramedic Ambulance staffed with 2 EMTs 24 hours per day. One Type III 4×4 Brush Truck is also located on-site.
As they did under the subscription service system, Rural/Metro continues to provide Advanced Life Support (ALS) and Basic Life Support (BLS) emergency medical response and ambulance transportation to residents within the Fire District. Emergency medical response to the victim is covered under the contract at no additional cost but Rural/Metro will continue to bill Medicare, third party payers, or patients for ambulance transportation to the hospital. The nearest hospital is approximately 10 miles from the district. Rural/Metro is continuing to upgrade their personnel and equipment especially in the area of emergency medical capabilities. In addition to the ambulances, the fire trucks are now staffed with ALS certified personnel and are equipped with the latest drugs, heart monitoring and defibrillator tools.